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A mix of old and new political figures forms Romania’s new government, which still has to be approved by parliament.
After a day of consultations with political parties, Romania’s new Prime Minister, Razvan Mihai Ungureanu, on Wednesday presented his government.
Seven ministers from the ruling coalition remain from the old cabinet, while new, younger ministers have been nominated for the key portofolios of economy, finance, interior and agriculture. All ministers from the ruling center-right Democratic Liberal Party, PDL, have been replaced with other members of the same party.
Ungureanu, 44, the chief of the foreign intelligence service, was appointed on Monday by President Traian Basescu to form a new government, after the resignation of previous prime minister Emil Boc. Boc announced he was quitting early on Monday amid continuing political and social unrest.
"The reforms will go on, what I am going to bring will be just the contribution made by a good administrator, who has a logic of efficiency first of all," Ungureanu said in a speech. "This is a government that deserves trust and is ready to prove that this is a change of political generation and of governing principles."
Parliament will vote on Thursday on the new government. The ruling party and its minority partners, the party of ethnic Hungarians and independents, have enough votes to approve the government. The leftist opposition has said it will boycott the vote.
Romania is dependent on a 20 billion euro rescue package from the IMF, the European Union and the World Bank. It obtained the loan in May 2009 in exchange for agreeing to push through austerity measures aimed at taming the country’s deficit.
In July 2010 the government cut civil servants' wages by 25 per cent, while thousands of state jobs were axed and VAT was increased by five percentage points to 24 per cent.
Falling wages and the effects of the austerity measures prompted thousands of people to take to the streets across the country over the past month, demanding the resignation of both the government and President Basescu.
To keep its reform policy credible for investors, the government must find common ground with the IMF and look for a new arrangement, experts say.